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HomePoems > Lao Tse, On the Nature of the Way > Water is softer     

  

Water is softer

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  water
is
softer
than
anything
and
better
than anything
at wearing down
rocks--
even granite
makes
no impression
on it--
and cracks
  the weak
outnumber
and
outweigh

the strong
those
who
yield

overcome
the stiffs
everyone
knows

what
few
follow
if
you
become
ruler
of the land
your shrines
are

made out of
dirt
if
you
become
king,
you
endure
the whole
country's
suffering
only
the truth
is
plain
paradox
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